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Di Resta back in DTM

Tuesday 21st January 2014

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Di Resta back in DTM

Di Resta back in DTM

Former Force India driver Paul di Resta will return to DTM this season, having signed a deal with Mercedes.

Having spent three seasons with Force India in Formula One, the Scot lost his drive at the end of last year.

Opting for an all-new line-up, Force India replaced both di Resta and Adrian Sutil with Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez.

That brought an end to di Resta's time in F1 with the 27-year-old announcing he's heading back to DTM.

"I'm happy to be coming back to the DTM - things have moved on here since 2010," di Resta, who won the 2010 Championship, told Autosport.

"I loved my time here before and I have great respect for it, and hopefully I will only grow fonder of it.

"Racing is my job, but I've got to enjoy my racing, and coming back here is where I am going to enjoy it most."

And the Scot is relishing the opportunity to fight for podium finishes, race victories and hopefully the title.

"Now I've got the challenge of being back in DTM and winning races with a frontline team again.

"I've not stood on the podium for three years, although I was close a few times in F1.

"I'm coming in with the goal of winning the first race. I don't really want to give myself time to settle in.

"Maybe it will take time, but certainly when I signed the contract I signed it to go out and win the Championship.

"I was the last person to win a Championship here for Mercedes and bringing the title back is one of the key reasons Mercedes has brought me here."

Di Resta, though, is confident his days in Formula One are not over as he could yet take a reserve role at Mercedes.

"No, definitely not," he said when asked if it was all over.

"I'm sad to go but I've had three tremendous years and I'm not leaving because I didn't perform, there are other issues.

"I'm still young enough that I can get back in there if the opportunity comes up.

"Racing in the DTM makes sense, and it lets me combine something with F1 and keep my foot in the door should something come up."

He added: "I think Mercedes are well aware that that's where I want to be, and I have their full support.

"I'm keen to stay involved in F1, and I think I can bring things to a team because I've got the experience of being there.

"We'll see how it goes, but at the moment there is nothing.

"I need to concentrate on DTM first, get this rolling and then we'll explore opportunities."

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